tv Nutrition Labeling CSPAN March 1, 2014 10:00am-10:24am EST
today, first lady michelle obama talking about the latest efforts to change nutrition labels. then a hearing examining the latest research to combat alzheimer's disease. rules of the being proposed for nonprofit groups seeking tax-exempt status. >> the new website makes it easier than ever for you to keep and shareshington d c this on other social networks. this lets you access the daily
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>> good morning. this is an exciting day. i'm delighted to have a chance to keep up. it is so wonderful to be here to celebrate the fourth anniversary of the first ladies let's move initiative. i want to thank michelle obama for hosting us all here today. we are committed to helping parents and children and families make healthy choices and live active lifestyle. wide range of efforts across the department to advance this. let's move to these towns and than 400with more locations commits to driving down childhood obesity rates in their community, reaching more than 63 million americans. schools have made a commitment
to help students get more active. we are so proud to work with the white house on the president's council on fitness, sports, and nutrition. there are many initiatives including the presidential active lifestyle award and the "i can do it, you can do it" program for children's and adults with disabilities. i and excited to be here with the first lady and commissioner hamburg to talk about the proposed update to the iconic label.on facts it has been a while since i have had to worry about what my kids are eating. they are in their 30's. i do get to occasionally shop with my 18 month old grandson george. that is a real adventure. it is harder nut to stay on top of what your kids need, find out what they actually eat in and try to decipher a label with a lively 18-month-old in the card. it can be downright frantic.
that's why simple changes to food labels can make a big difference. in fact, more than half of consumers rely on those labels for guidance. the proposed changes captured the most up-to-date science in a way that's easy to read and understand. for helping moms and dads by making it easier to make healthy food choices on a daily basis. now, there may not be one silver bullet in the fight against childhood obesity, but the updates being proposed today are just some of the many steps we are taking to reach our ultimate goal of better health outcomes for all our kids. we have all heard the statistics. obesity in children tripled from the 1970's to 2008. reports project that by 2030 half of all the adults in the united states will be obese. this epidemic hurts or economy as well as our health. obesity related medical conditions cost our nation
nearly $150 billion every year. by 2018 experts believe that obesity will make up 21% of all the health costs. now, with that being said, there is some very important new data and progress that's being shown. the c.d.c.'s most recent data shows that collective efforts are beginning to work. especially among preschoolers where the 2012 rate of childhood obesity is at its lowest point since the peak of the epidemic. there is no better leader on this effort than first lady michelle obama, and she has done some amaze work on all these issues. along with her other initiatives, her let's move campaign has inspired all of us over the last four years to remember that exercise doesn't have to be a chore.
whether to burn calories, build muscle, or just have fun living an active life is the best way to feel great and stay healthy. over the country schools, community leaders, people, moms and dads are joining together to help our kids get and stay healthy. families are working hard to make changes in their own lives. big and small. and our job is to empower consumers and help make those choices as easy as possible. i'd like now to introduce one of our great health leaders at h.h.s., f.d.a. commissioner dr. peggy hamburg. she has a passion for food safety and food issues and an important newport folio and is here to talk more in detail about the proposed changes to the nutrition facts label. dr. hamburg.
>> thank you so much, secretary sebelius. i'm delighted to be joining all of you for today's let's move announcement in which f.d.a.'s unveiling our proposed changes to a new and improved, more user friendly version of the nutrition facts label. before i walkthrough our proposed changes, i also want to join secretary sebelius and thank first lady michelle obama for her continued commitment to encourage americans to live healthier lifestyles and recognize the four-year anniversary of the let's move initiative. for 20 years we have relied on the now iconic nutrition facts label to help us make informed food choices on what to eat. when it was first introduced this landmark label provided the american consumer for the first time with the uniform information about the nutritional content of the
foods. since then, we gained a better understanding of the relationship between what we eat and many serious chronic diseases affecting millions of americans. for example, we know that eating more calories than needed to maintain our body weight coupled with the lack of physical activity is a primary risk factor for obesity in the general population. f.d.a. experts relied on data from a variety of sources, including the institute of medicine, to design this new label. let me highlight some of the proposed changes. first, sugar. we know that as a nation we eat too much added sugar. while some of those sugars occur naturally in foods, much of it is added. the new label would provide more information about sugars and food by now indicating when a food has added sugar. and why does this really matter? because added sugars contribute to a substantial portion of
american calories, but don't really provide much else in the way of nutrients. this has major implications for maintaining a healthy body weight. we believe that requiring added sugars to be listed separately on the nutrition facts panel will better allow consumers to identify and compare products with added sugar and enable them to make better choices. we also hope this change will motivate the food industry to reformulate its products. as many of you may know, this occurred back in 2006 when f.d.a. required food producers to add information about transfats in the labels. when americans have better options, they can make healthier choices, and we all win. so now let's talk about how much we eat. in many cases people are now eating amounts that are very
different from the serving sizes the f.d.a. first put in place in 1994. i should note our official definition for a serving size is a reference amount. it reflects how much we actually eat when serving ourselves, and for this reference amount to be useful to the consumer, it has to be close to what the average person would typically eat. so contrary to what many may think, serving sizes on food packages are not recommended portions. we also know that package size affects what people eat, and people are likely to eat or drink all the contents of certain packaged foods. all in one sitting. for packaged foods and beverages that are typically consumed in one sitting, we propose labeling all of them as a single serving size and declaring calorie and nutrient information for the entire package. for example, a can of ready to eat soup is usually consumed as a single serving.
for packages that are larger and could be consumed either as a single or multiple serving, manufacturers would have to provide a dual column. this label would indicate both per serving and per package calorie and nutrient information. this way people will know how many calories and nutrients they are consuming, if, in fact, they eat or drink the entire amount at one time. it might be surprising to learn that in this day and age there still are some nutrients that people simply are not getting enough of. we have known for some time that potassium and vitamin d are important nutrients for health, and significant for maintaining healthy lifestyles. potassium can help lower blood pressure, while vitamin d is a
key nutrient for helping to promote healthy bone development and general health. but what's new is that current data show that certain population groups are not getting enough of them. therefore, we are proposing that these nutrients be required elements that are listed on the nutrition facts label, along with calcium and iron, which have been required for some time. and vitamins a and c, currently required, could be listed voluntarily. finally, we are proposing changes to some daily values which are intended to be a guide for how much of a particular nutrient a person should consume each day, or in the case of things like sodium, an upper limit for the day. the daily values are used to determine the percent daily value you see on the label. the percent daily value helps you see how much of the daily value one serving of a
particular package food contributes. we have determined through our scientific research that some of these numbers should change, while the upper limits for sodium will decrease slightly, to be in line with current recommendations, data shows that daily targets through dietary fine earn calcium should in fact increase somewhat. so finally let's see what's changed about the layout of the nutrition facts label itself. you'll see that information about calories and serving size really jumps out at you much more than it did before. on the other hand, we have actually removed certain amount such as calories from fat, and that's because we learned that total fat is less important than the type of fat that you eat. these are very important changes. our goal here is to design a label that is easier to read and one that consumers can understand. this proposal is the culmination of years of research study and requests for public input. we welcomed the comments we have received from experts and
consumers alike to guide us towards the label that we feel will provide people with the information that they want and that they need. it's clear that the benefits will far outweigh the costs. we believe these proposed updates to the nutrition facts label will help in improving public health, incorporating the latest nutrition recommendations to reduce the risk of chronic disease such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and stroke. and we realize that the label alone won't magically change how america eats, but we hope that once consumers decide to implement changes in their diet and lead to healthier lifestyles, it will provide them with the tools to be successful. so thank you and i now like to turn to ms. bryant, a mother of four and also a grandmother, to talk about how this matters to families. >> good morning.
my name is ms. bryant nelson, and i'm a wife, a mom, and a grandmother. keeping my family healthy is important to me. i want my children and my grandchild to have the best shots at the future, but with a limited time and limited budget, cooking healthy food isn't always easy. that's why i'm so grateful for the no care -- for the new program. they took me around the grocery store and told me how to read food labels, how to buy more fruits and vegetables, and about eating whole grains. the best part of learning that i can feed my family a healthy, home cooked meal on just $10.
i was shocked. because of cooking matters, my kids are eating and actually liking brown rice and whole wheat bread. we are grilling and baking food instead of frying it. and we now know that half our plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables. and when we made a simple change, my kids actually lost weight. my son lost 11 pounds. another great payoff to living a healthier -- another great payoff to living healthier is being here today. i am incredibly honored to introduce the first lady of the united states, mrs. michelle obama. [applause]
>> her passion and dedication has made a huge difference for my family and for so many families across the country. thank you. [applause] >> good morning, everyone. it's great to have you-all here. let me start by thanking shanise for that very kind introduction and her wonderful remarks. let me just say when, we heard in the back were you a grandmother, everybody was like, oh. really? she's a grandmother. we thought you were a teenager. really? see what eating healthy does? but it's great to have you here. thank you so much for working so hard to keep your family in shape and healthy. we are very proud of you. very proud of you. i also want to thank secretary sebelius and commissioner hamburg for their outstanding leadership as well.
it takes a whole lot of people to get all of this done, and we are grateful for you-all. your leadership and their efforts. thank you so much for being here today. [applause] >> we are also joined by one of my dear friends and a fabulous advocate, rachel ray. where are you? there you are. rachel ray who has done so much work for let's move. thank you, rachel. we're going to do something fun shortly, right? you ready? all right. i'll wear my flat shoes for you. of course i want to thank all of you. the parents, the advocates, the industry leaders who worked so hard to make this day possible. congratulations. this is a good day. it's a great announcement. back when we first launched let's move four years ago, all
of us here today were driven by a simple belief that parents deserve to have the information they need to make healthy choices for their kids. and this isn't a particularly radical idea. in fact, it seems pretty obvious, but the truth is that too often it's nearly impossible to get the most basic facts about the food we buy for our families. for example, how many of you have at some point in your life made a statement that you were going to eat better? maybe you wanted to lose a little weight. maybe you wanted to improve your family's nutrition. maybe there were health issues in your family that required you to watch what you ate. whatever the reason, you resolved to read those labels and only buy foods that you believed would be good for you and your kids. so you marched into the supermarket, you picked up a can or box of something, you squinted at that little tiny
label, and you were totally and utterly lost. so there you stood alone in some aisle in a store, the clock ticking away at the precious little time remaining to complete your weekly grocery shopping, and all you could do was scratch your head, confused and bewildered, and wonder, is this too much sugar in this product? is 50% of the daily allowance of riboflavin a good thing or bad thing? and how on earth could this teeny little package contain five whole servings? this stream of questions and worries running through your head when all you really wanted to know was, should i be eating this or not? is this good for my kids or not? and? it is healthy, how much of it should i be eating? but unless had you a thesaurus, calculator, microscope, or degree in nutrition, you're out of luck. you felt defeated so you went back to buy the same stuff you
always buy. and that's a familiar scenario for far too many families and parents trying to do the right thing for their kids. and it's simply not acceptable. as consumers and as parents, we have a right to understand what's in the food we are feeding our families, because that's really the only way that we can make informed choices. by having clear, accurate information. and ultimately that's what today's announcement is all about. as you have heard today for the first time since the nutrition label was developed two decades ago, we are overhauling these labels to make them easier to read and understand. and this is a major undertaking involving folks from across the country from the f.d.a. to the food industry to advocates throughout communities in this country. because a lot has changed in the past 20 years. just consider all the new
information we have learned about nutrition and healthy eating during that time period. not to mention this label appears on roughly 700,000 products. but in the end, our guiding principle here is simple. that you as a parent and a consumer should be able to walk into a grocery store, pick an item off the shelf, and tell whether it's good for your family. to achieve this goal in the coming months, the f.d.a. will be soliciting comments from the public on the two possible options that you see behind me. and i know there will be many opinions on what this label should look like, but i think that we all can agree that families deserve more and better information about the food they eat. and it's important to note that no matter what the final version looks like, the new label will allow you to immediately spot the calorie count, because it will be in large font and not buried in the fine print.
you'll also learn more about where the sugar in the food comes from like was it a sugar in your yogurt was added during processing or whether it comes from ingredients like fruits. this is what you'll get from the label of the future. this will be the new norm in providing consumers with information about the food we buy and eat. so this is a huge deal, which is why everybody is here. and it's going to make a big difference for families across this country. so today i want to end as i started, by truly thanking the f.d.a. and everyone else involved in this important effort. i am excited to see all the comments that come in over the coming months, and i look forward to celebrating the final label, and then ultimately seeing it on grocery shelves across the country in the years to come.